One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A baton carried by a fool or jester as a mock emblem of office; = "bauble". Now historical.
2A pet notion, a craze.
Early 17th century. From French marotte object of a ridiculous and exaggerated affection, foolish idea, jester's baton bearing a head with multicoloured belled cap, image of the Virgin Mary from Marie, the name of the Virgin Mary + -ot. With the phrase to crown with a marotte, compare French coiffer d'une marotte.
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